More notes at http://tanguay.info/learntracker
C O U R S E 
Human Evolution: Past and Future
John Hawks, University of Wisconsin
C O U R S E   L E C T U R E 
The Laetoli Footprints of Australopithecus afarensis
Notes taken on June 26, 2017 by Edward Tanguay
Laetoli footprints
first evidence of bipedal walking by early hominin
preserved in volcanic layer
not only has hominin footprints but other mammals
200 square kilometers
1894 reported in scientific literature
Oscar Bauman
Austrian geographer
was looking for the source of the Nile River
he got lost
collected fossils
took them back to Germany, at Berlin Naturkunde Museum
more fossils collected
more scientists wanted to come
Louis and Mary Leakey was planning a German/British research trip, but was cancelled because of the war
1974 Mary Leakey came back
collected fossils
first hominin fossils
prototype for Australopithecus afarensis
3.85 and 2.95 million years ago
Lucy's species
1978 footprints
first evidence of upright posture and bipedal evidence in hominins
3.5 or 3.6 million years ago
the more the prints are exposed
there could be more than two individuals
probably four individuals with same stature and same height
the entire footprint trail is almost 27 meters long and includes impressions of about 70 early human footprints
1978 Paul Abell joined Leakey's team and found the 27 meter-long footprint trail
the early humans that left these prints were bipedal and had big toes in line with the rest of their foot
his means that these early human feet were more human-like than ape-like
apes have highly divergent big toes that help them climb and grasp materials like a thumb does
the footprints also show that the gait of these early humans was heel-strike followed by toe-off, the way modern humans walk